Did you know that around 2 million burglaries are reported each year in the United States, and renters are just as likely to be the victims of property crime as homeowners?
Now, the question is, “What are you doing to keep your home safe as a renter?” Unfortunately, most renters probably answer by saying they lock the door at night. Although your landlord is responsible for providing a certain level of safety, things can happen that are out of everyone’s control, and locking the door won’t be enough.
Here are a few home safety tips that are perfect for renters.
Consider a home security system
A home security system is still the best way to protect your home, whether you’re in an apartment or a rental home. Because most systems are wireless, they are extremely easy to install, and a competitive home security market means there are many affordable options.
Don’t want to invest in an entire system? Simply purchase a camera or two and place them in areas that can easily be seen from outside. Just seeing a camera is often enough for a potential burglar to look elsewhere for an easier target.
Don’t have enough money for a camera either? Place a security decal in your window! If a thief thinks your rental is protected with a security system, he won’t try to break in.
Hide valuables away from windows
Whether you choose to install a home security system or not, you need to take special care to hide valuables away from the windows. Hang expensive prints and paintings in interior hallways and try not to place TVs and electronic equipment directly across from a window. If you really want to keep your rental safe, keep the blinds closed. If natural lighting is important to you, consider buying sheers that allow light in, but keep prying eyes out.
Get tricky when hiding valuables in your home
Where do you think a burglar looks first? Think jewelry boxes and underneath the bed. If you want to keep your valuables safe, you have to get tricky about where you hide them.
Clean out an old sunscreen bottle and place it in the medicine cabinet. It’s a great place to hide cash. Tuck money into the pocket of a ragged coat in the back of the closet. Small valuables can be hidden in the toes of boots. You can even purchase a special vent that gets installed in the wall and stores all your valuables!
Don’t leave your home unattended
Okay, so you can’t be in your home all the time, but leaving your rental unattended for a long period of time is never a good idea. If you plan on being away for any more than 24 hours, ask a friend or family member to stop in periodically.
Even if you’re not home, you can make it look like you’re home! There are many home automation systems that will turn lights on and off throughout the day. The BeOn Home light bulb is one really cool product that actually learns your family’s habits.
Another quick tip? Keep your car keys on your nightstand when you sleep. If someone tries to break into your rental, the car alarm may be all it takes to scare them away!
Keeping your rental safe doesn’t have to cost a fortune, and it doesn’t have to be hard. Even following just one of these tips will allow you to enjoy a safer home.